When you’re wealthy, it’s easy to get caught up in the luxury lifestyle. You buy the best of everything, from clothes and cars to food and travel.

A netizen recently asked, “Former rich people, what is a luxury item/product you used to buy regularly that you could no longer afford and found out a generic/ consumer brand was exactly the same?”. Here are the top responses:

New Furniture

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“New furniture. We furnished our entire house for 10% of what the bank told us to factor in for furniture.

People will often sell very high-quality furniture for a fraction of what it is really worth. We have several very high-end chairs and get compliments from most of our guests.” 

Laundry Detergent For Babies

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“I used to buy expensive laundry detergent for babies because I was allergic to something in many detergents that would give me a rash around my waist or ankles. Also, bedsheets would do the same.

I had the realization that hotels can’t afford to use detergent on their sheets that gives any of their guests rashes and asked a housekeeper what they used.

Now I buy a 40-pound bucket of Boardwalk industrial detergent for $40. It’s very concentrated and only needs to use a few tablespoons per load and a bucket lasts about 2 years in my house.” 

Brembo, Textar, EBC Pads

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“I worked in a brake pad factory about 10/12 years ago. Brembo, Textar, EBC etc are all the same pads. I’d just change the print template. I’ve had people argue with me till they’re blue in the face like I wasn’t doing it for 12 hours a day lol.” 

Brand Makeup

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“Luxury brand makeup. I used to work at Sephora and I realized that for the vast majority of products, the cheaper brands work just as well- in fact, sometimes they’re *literally* just the same product made by the same factory and just white labeled with fancy marketing.

Foundation is now my only splurge and even then it’s only because you can’t try on drugstore foundation to color match.” 

Mixed Nuts 

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“Fancy mixed nuts. The prices have gone way up, and I’m finally priced out. I plan to get a can at Christmas, and maybe for my birthday, but that’s about all I can afford at this point.” 

 Hair Products

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“Salon-quality hair products. You can get the same Pureology formula shampoo and conditioner at Costco (look for the ‘moisture’ salon shampoo and conditioner) for a tiny fraction of the price.”

Pasta Sauce 

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“After using Rao’s pasta sauce I can never go back to prego again.”, said one. 

“Prego is repulsive & has this horrible distinctive taste. My ex-husband told me he was going to surprise me by making pasta sauce from scratch. I took one bite, got really disappointed & told him I knew it was Prego.

He looked really guilty & finally told me it was, but he didn’t want to go through the trouble of making a real tomato sauce & hoped I wouldn’t notice. Hate Prego, & my ex-husband.”, another added. 

Fast Fashion

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“Part of it is fast fashion in recent years, but clothes are completely different and not worth it at lower price ranges. Some fast fashion is price hiked like Urban Outfitters or even Target, but quality clothes with some brands make $100 jeans, or $60 shirts that are genuinely better, and last longer.” 

Latest Technology Every Year

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“Grew up middle class, married someone wealthy, now divorced and back to the middle class. 

Buying the latest technology every year. Newest iPhone, newest MacBook etc. Thousands of dollars wasted buying something slightly different just for looks really, when the once being replaced was still perfectly fine and had years of life left in it. 

Something I miss that I wish I could afford would be the expensive furniture. Having a home that looks like something out of a magazine really sparked joy. Also, having a subscription for regularly delivered flowers. No way would I pay for that now, but sure it was nice!” 

Designer Handbags

KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA - MAY 09, 2016: inside of Louis Vuitton store. Louis Vuitton Malletier, commonly referred to as Louis Vuitton, or shortened to LV, is a French fashion house founded in 1854 by Louis Vuitton.
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“Designer handbags. Anything that is very labeled centric really.  I can still afford them but I realized it was such a scam because the quality is not better.  Especially with all the fakes out there. 

You can get really decent products from mid-price brands without shelling out big bucks just so that you can walk around with someone else’s name on your arm.

One odd thing that I started prioritizing was having a private guide when traveling to new cities on vacation. 

A lot of (historic) cities offer tours and are well worth the price to really get the inside scoop, but having my own private guide so that I decide how long to stay and when to eat really makes the whole experience better.” 

Pillsbury Cinnamon Rolls 

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“Walmart brand cinnamon rolls are way better than Pillsbury.” 

Cleaning Chemicals

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“Cleaning chemicals. Instead of buying a ton of different overpriced things I now buy the basics and have learned they clean better in many instances. (peroxide, white vinegar, alcohol, baking soda, etc).” 

Meat From Higher End Supermarkets 

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“I used to work in a pork processing factory in the UK. The meat for the lower-end supermarkets is the exact same as the meat from the higher end, the only variations are sometimes the salt content and the packaging. Otherwise, identical.”


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“100% CLOTHES. Back when I was wealthy in my 20’s, I lived in some dream world where I assumed everyone knew my clothes were expensive brand names and I thought ladies were always lusting over my designer bags.

Now that I live a regular life, I shop at Goodwill or cheap stores for clothing. Spending $200 on a button-up white blouse is STUPID, financially.

They make all sorts of beautiful clothes, that look identical, for a fraction of the price. $75 Birkenstocks?! I found some similar-looking shoes at $5 below for $2.50 last weekend. Comfy and cute.

I guess what I’m also saying my perception of how the world viewed me when I had money was ALL OFF. The majority of people really don’t care what other people are doing or wearing. The only thing I notice about other people these days, Is if they have a dog with them. Now THAT’S a designer item.” 


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“Booze. I used to spend a fortune on high-end bourbon. I would even spend on high-end vodka ( I’m pretty sure there is very little difference beyond filtering). Once I retired, I only buy the cheap stuff.” 

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